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Gn. Cornelius Scipio Asina Surrenders

Meanwhile, however, those who were charged with the shipbuilding were busied with the construction of the vessels; while others collected crews and were engaged in teaching them to row on dry land: which they contrived to do in the following manner. They made the men sit on rower's benches on dry land, in the same order as they would sit on the benches in actual vessels: in the midst of them they stationed the Celeustes, and trained them to get back and draw in their hands all together in time, and then to swing forward and throw them out again, and to begin and cease these movements at the word of the Celeustes. By the time these preparations were completed the ships were built. They therefore launched them, and, after a brief preliminary practice of real sea-rowing, started on their coasting voyage along the shore of Italy, in accordance with the Consul's order.
B. C. 260. Cn. Cornelius Scipio Asina, C. Duilius, Coss.
For Gnaeus Cornelius Scipio, who had been appointed by the Roman people a few days before to command the fleet, after giving the ship captains orders that as soon as they had fitted out the fleet they should sail to the Straits, had put to sea himself with seventeen ships and sailed in advance to Messene; for he was very eager to secure all pressing necessaries for the naval force.
Cornelius captured with the loss of his ships.
While there some negotiation was suggested to him for the surrender of the town of Lipara. Snatching at the prospect somewhat too eagerly, he sailed with the above-mentioned ships and anchored off the town. But having been informed in Panormus of what had taken place, the Carthaginian general Hannibal despatched Boōdes, a member of the Senate, with a squadron of twenty ships. He accomplished the voyage at night and shut up Gnaeus and his men within the harbour. When day dawned the crews made for the shore and ran away, while Gnaeus, in utter dismay, and not knowing in the least what to do, eventually surrendered to the enemy.
The rest of the Roman fleet arrive and nearly capture Hannibal.
The Carthaginians having thus possessed themselves of the ships as well as the commander of their enemies, started to rejoin Hannibal. Yet a few days afterwards, though the disaster of Gnaeus was so signal and recent, Hannibal himself was within an ace of falling into the same glaring mistake. For having been informed that the Roman fleet in its voyage along the coast of Italy was close at hand, he conceived a wish to get a clear view of the enemy's number and disposition. He accordingly set sail with fifty ships, and just as he was rounding the "Italian Headland" he fell in with the enemy, who were sailing in good order and disposition. He lost most of his ships, and with the rest effected his own escape in a manner beyond hope or expectation.

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